Borussia Dortmund's top bosses met today to discuss an emergency offensive on the transfer market before the end of January. It marks a change in transfer policy which is largely dictated by the the injury to Jakub Blaszczykowski at the weekend.
Jürgen Klopp's side have been
plagued by injury throughout this season, with one key player after another
forced to spend long spells on the sidelines. Blaszczykowski is the latest
victim, the Polish international sustaining a rupture to his anterior cruciate
ligament in the opening minutes of Saturday's draw with Augsburg.
Until now, Dortmund have been unwilling to indulge in the madness of the January window, but director of sport Michael Zorc appears to have changed his tune since the weekend, admitting to "Ruhr Nachrichten" that "there are one or two possibilities we need to explore."
Chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke confirms Dortmund's change in policy in tomorrow's edition of "Die Welt", stating that "we have spoken internally, and we are looking at the market. If it makes financial and sporting sense, we will be active in the coming days"
Blaszczykowski and central defender Neven Subotic are out for the rest of
the season, while Mats Hummels and Ilkay Gündogan have been sidelined since the
autumn. According to reports within Germany, Dortmund may decide to seek short
term cover in both defence and midfield.
Last year's Champions League finalists have struggled this season, their shallow squad being exposed by the injury crisis. Newcomers such as Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang have shown their quality at times, but are yet to adapt fully to the Bundesliga, while most of Dortmund's fit players currently appear overworked, even after the winter break.
The draw with Augsburg was Dortmund's fourth home game in a row without a victory. After the game, Jürgen Klopp bemoaned his side's mentality: "There was none of the usual ease, none of the usual joy in playing the game", he said.
Should Dortmund fail to
strengthen before the end of the January window, the depression may only
continue. Although Hummels should return to the squad next weekend, the club
are in desperate need of a stronger central defender. They are currently
relying on defensive midfielder Sven Bender, as well as their emergency
replacement Manuel Friedrich, a veteran free agent they signed earlier this
Gündogan, too, is set to be out for even longer. The United and Real Madrid transfer target returned to recovery training over the winter break, only to succumb to illness and miss most of the camp. He is expected not to return for a few months yet.
Dortmund are currently third in the Bundesliga, fourteen points behind leaders Bayern, having played a game more.